Two license agreements have already been signed with postproduction houses Filmmore (Netherlands) and Dame Blanche (Belgium). Both organizations have undergone the EclairColor certification program to meet the HDR technology requirements. Discussions are currently underway with additional post companies in the United Kingdom, France and the US.
The announcement was made in conjunction with the ICTA (International Cinema Technology Association) Seminar Series underway at the Universal Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles.
“We are delighted to launch our new EclairColor license program, which allows independent companies other than our Eclair and CinemaNext subsidiaries to work within the EclairColor ecosystem, whether on the EclairColor mastering or color grading of movies, or the installation of EclairColor-enabled projection systems,” explains Jean Mizrahi, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Ymagis Group. “A few days after receiving the support of Bpifrance Assurance Export for the North American market, this program marks another important step in the acceleration of the development of our HDR cinema solution and confirms our strategy to make the EclairColor HDR business model open to virtually anyone. With EclairColor, we are committed to helping the creative community ensure that the films seen by cinemagoers will be as the artists originally intended. The strict specifications of the EclairColor process ensure consistency between postproduction and cinema projection, thus guaranteeing that the artistic choices and vision of film directors and directors of photography are accurately reflected.”
“Once our senior colorist Martin Klein had seen the technique with his own eyes, while overseeing the EclairColor trim pass on Martin Koolhoven’s Brimstone in Paris in early 2017, we were convinced this amazing new technology would be the way forward for us,” explains Miga Bär, Filmmore’s DI Technical Director & Color Management Specialist. “The wonderful thing about HDR is that it’s really a technical innovation that will change storytelling and creative decision-making. Within HDR images the contrast ratio between white and black is higher than we are used to seeing in cinema and on TV. This results in images that are closer to what our eyes can see, both in brightness and contrast. The result is more lifelike. DP’s and colorists can use the extra range the way they see fit. The easiest way to understand without seeing it, is to imagine a painter that has worked with 20 different shades of paint forever, and now suddenly has 10 additional shades at hand. He might decide not to use the new colors to their full extent on every painting he makes, but it can open doors that used to be closed.”
There are currently more than 120 EclairColor-equipped cinema screens with content released in EclairColor HDR every week for a total of 60 feature-length films to date. EclairColor HDR is powered by highly-advanced projection systems available from Sony Digital Cinema 4K and Barco.
EclairColor is a HDR technology that is affordable and accessible to all cinemas, from arthouses to the largest multiplexes. EclairColor technology was praised by moviegoers in an audience survey conducted in France by an independent body, L’Observatoire de la Satisfaction, which revealed 97.3% of moviegoers that attended the screening of a film in EclairColor intend to repeat the experience and over two thirds will be recommending it to their family and friends. Audiences spontaneously mentioned the beauty of the images, stating they are of superior quality, more colorful and brighter in comparison with a standard image. More importantly, the projection in EclairColor significantly increased the level of appreciation of the film versus a screening in standard format. The full study is available here.